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Peak allergy seasons in the south Fort Worth area tend to be in the fall and the spring.

While the most noticeable culprits are ragweed in the fall and Mountain Cedar blowing up from the Hill Country in the winter, seasonal allergy sufferers may experience symptoms year round. Knowing what you’re sensitive to makes it easier to avoid certain allergy triggers, but there’s always something in the air in Texas. For minor symptoms, try these home remedies. If you have chronic or severe allergic reactions, give us a call.

Rinse your sinuses

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Call it a Neti Pot or a sinus rinse, irrigating your nasal passages with a gentle, sterile saline solution washes away any pollen you may have breathed in throughout the day, minimizing the amount of time it has to become an irritant or make its way deeper into your respiratory system. Rinse your sinuses at the end of each day or after you’ve been exposed to something you know you’re sensitive to (e.g. pet dander, weeds, a dusty attic, etc.).

Shower before bed

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Changing clothes and showering before you go to bed serves the same purpose for the outside of your body that rinsing your sinuses does for your nasal passages. You’re simply washing off pollen that would otherwise be transferred to your bedsheets and pillows where you will breathe it in while you sleep.

Change the air filter regularly

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The HVAC system in your home is a primary line of defense against re-circulating allergens. Changing the air filter routinely keeps dust, pests, animal dander, and other allergens from circulating through your vents and into your home. It also helps your HVAC system run more efficiently.

Clean the air ducts

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If you live in an older home or you purchased your home from a smoker or pet-owner, a thorough air duct cleaning might be in order. Theoretically this process clears the ductwork of what air filters may have missed over the years.

Keep doors and windows closed

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Spring and fall are the best seasons in Texas to have your doors and windows open… unless you’re sensitive to pollen. Keeping the doors and windows closed minimizes the amount of pollen that blows into your home environment. In a situation where you need to air out your home, check the pollen count for the day to find the best day to do so.

Opt for indoor seating or activities

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For the same reasons, avoid patio seating and extended time outside. Believe it or not, Joe T’s has indoor seating.

Address leaks and water damage immediately

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Even individuals who aren’t sensitive to ragweed or Mountain Cedar may have a mold allergy. If you see any evidence of leaks under your sinks or in your ceiling, get them fixed as soon as possible. Mold spores thrive in a warm, moist environment. Texas humidity is a big enough challenge for those sensitive to mold spores without having to battle leaky plumbing, too.

That’s a lot of avoidance. It’s often inconvenient and can hinder social outings. These tips don’t solve the problems, but they help make life a bit more tolerable.

Of course, for medical advice on your specific allergy triggers and potential long-term solutions, call to schedule an appointment with Dr. Benke. He knows the south Fort Worth area (and all the allergy triggers here) well.